Today is the 13th of February. The supposedly unlucky 13 was always lucky for Harvey and me. His birthday was the 13th and our beloved villa was No. 13. But the only special thing about today's date is that it precedes Valentine's Day tomorrow.
We never made a big fuss about it, but we did always find each other a soppy or silly card (sometimes one of each). One of my favourites from Harvey said, "On a scale of 1 (lentil soup) to 10 (hot fudge sundae) - you are an 11." Or the one that asked wistfully, "Shall I tell you my most secret, fond and optimistic dream? Maybe one day you'll love me as much as chocolate." Whereas I, when I wasn't being soppy, tended more to the bizarre, like the one with a ferocious looking woman calling out to her husband, "What's the matter, Harvey? Cat got your tongue?" while he hides round the corner clutching the cat lovingly to his face and saying, "Oh my God, she knows about us!"
This is of course all simply a feeble attempt to feel better by remembering how lucky I've been to be able to give, and get, Valentine's Day cards like these for thirty years, instead of feeling unutterably sorry for myself because I won't be getting or giving any tomorrow.